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In Focus

Independence Blue Cross Foundation supports state’s first mobile response unit for COVID-19 testing and education

L to R - Lorina Marshall-Blake, George Fernandez, and Kathy McKenzie

L to R - Lorina Marshall-Blake, George Fernandez, and Kathy McKenzie

The Independence Blue Cross Foundation joined the Pennsylvania Department of Health, Latino Connection, and Highmark Blue Shield to announce the state’s first mobile response unit to provide COVID-19 testing and education throughout Pennsylvania, addressing minority and underserved communities.

Known as CATE, Community-Accessible Testing & Education, the unit is equipped to conduct COVID-19 testing on-site through a mobile RV vehicle while also educating the public on how to stay healthy and safe.

George Fernandez and Lorina Marshall-Blake dancing in front of CATE

Foundation president Lorina Marshall-Blake with George Fernandez, Founder and CEO of Latino Connection, at the launch of CATE in Harrisburg.

“We’re very excited to work with the Pennsylvania Department of Health and Latino Connection to address the need for increased COVID-19 testing in underserved communities throughout our region,” President of the Independence Blue Cross Foundation Lorina Marshall-Blake said. “Education and testing are essential to ending the devastation of this pandemic in our communities, particularly among minorities and communities of color who have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19.”

CATE will begin touring southeastern Pennsylvania in September. Those interested in visiting can find the tour stop schedule listed on the website at or on Facebook at Services are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Social distancing and masking guidelines will be followed at all times.

For more information about COVID-19 testing in near you, visit the Department of Health’s website,  

The IBC Foundation has been a leader in community health and serving the southeastern region’s nonprofits for nearly a decade.  With the additional community needs created by the coronavirus pandemic, we dedicated nearly $1.25M to COVID recovery efforts and to focused causes:

  • Food insecurity
  • COVID 19 Community testing
  • Domestic violence
Independence Blue Cross Foundation Team

The Independence Blue Cross Foundation is leading a future for equitable health in our communities and nation. The IBC Foundation’s grant programs and the Independence Blue Cross Foundation Institute for Health Equity are advancing three areas of impact: Access to Care, the Healthcare Workforce, and Health Equity. Since inception the IBC Foundation’s most important stakeholder – the community – has been at the center of the work. By the end of 2023, the IBC Foundation will have awarded grants totaling more than $80 million to support nonprofits and research improving the health and well-being of communities in southeastern Pennsylvania.

Learn more by visiting our website: Connect with the Independence Blue Cross Foundation on LinkedIn.

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